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Tag : foliage

10 Oct 2016

Making an island glow

Glowing islandAt Chittenden Reservoir in Vermont there is a pretty little island about 300 yards off shore. It is a favorite  place for photographers and I’ve photographed it on many occasions at different times of day and different seasons. I decided to try it at night and use a large flashlight to illuminate the island using a technique called light painting, where you pass the light over the subject many times during a long exposure, I usually do 30 seconds.  So tonight I started about 30 minutes after the sun went down and shot for the next hour. There was only a slight breeze which gave me the nice reflection on the water. Then I was lucky to have a shooting star which gave me a beautiful final touch. This is one exposure with only minor adjustments in Lightroom. As the sky got darker I needed to bump my ISO up to 400 and I was shooting at f/5.6.

08 Oct 2016

Beauty on the way to Stowe

Toward Camel's HumpThis weekend I am participating in an art show in Stowe, VT, about 80 miles from my house in Woodstock. It is a beautiful drive and this morning during the drive the foliage was looking great. This morning as I headed up I-91, one of Vermont’s most iconic mountains, Camel’s Hump, kept appearing behind hills full of foliage.

I pulled off the highway and found a nice spot to get a shot of Vermont’s tallest mountain without any man-made structures. I love the way the light was making the foreground glow and keeping Camel’s Hump in the darkness.

05 Oct 2016

Last day of this year’s Vermont Fall Foliage Workshop

7936It is always sad to come to the last day of a workshop when I have met so many fun, nice and interesting people, but the 2016 edition of my Vermont Fall Foliage Photography Workshop came to an end today. Eight participants came from all over the country to enjoy Vermont’s beauty and hopefully improve their photography skills. My friend Nat Clymer joined us on Tuesday to share his photographic knowledge, it was great having him here.

04 Oct 2016

Meeting the friendly people of Vermont

7780-2We headed north today during my Vermont Fall Foliage Photography Workshop, to check out the area around Groton and Peacham, which has some of the best scenery in Vermont. There are a couple of ponds in Groton State Park that are amazingly scenic and they didn’t let us down. I’ve been there when the color was better but we still made some nice photos.

One thing that always strikes me about Vermont is how welcoming the people are. While in Peacham we were photographing around a church and a neighbor came out to show us some wild turkeys walking through his field toward us. Peacham gets tons out of town photographers and I’m sure many walk through this guy’s fields without thinking that they may be stomping on a fence, but he invited us come into yard to photograph his cows and the approaching turkeys.

While in Peacham, workshopper Steve Minden took a fun picture of me in the town’s information booth.

 

loren information

03 Oct 2016

Making quick friends

7746-2As the week goes on the color gets better at my Vermont Fall Foliage Photography Workshop. We hit several of the local hotspots and found some nice color and cool scenes.

We have a great group with two people from California, two from Florida, one from PA, Ohio, NY and CT. It is always fun to watch a group of people who don’t know each other quickly meld together with their common interest of photography.

02 Oct 2016

Vermont Fall Foliage Photography Workshop off to a good start

7672This is the first shooting day of my annual Vermont Fall Foliage Photography Workshop at my home in Woodstock, VT. The weather this summer in Vermont has been hot and dry with drought conditions prevalent throughout the state. Early predictions were that it would be a bad season for foliage but it looks like it is just running late, like two weeks late. During the scouting I did last week, I found several pockets of beautiful color but there is lots of green showing in most areas.

So we are focusing on the nice areas, which will mean more driving than I like to do but it gives my out of town guests a good chance to see a lot of the Vermont countryside. We ventured north on the famous Rt. 100 and stopped at a cool barn along the road. It took some work but we were able to line it up with the color in the hills. It was a great way to start off the workshop.

07 Oct 2015

Last day of Vermont Fall Foliage Photography Workshop

black and redSeveral years ago I found this great little overlook in Bridgewater, VT, that has an easterly view of layers of hills all the way into New Hampshire. Each time I go there it looks different and I’ve made some beautiful shots from that spot. Today’s sunrise was pretty nice and shooting sunrise and hills can be tricky so I didn’t break out the camera, I just helped my workshoppers get the best pictures they could. And they did great, you can see some of their photos by clicking here.

After the sunrise, we went back into Woodstock to get breakfast and then did some photography at Billings-Marsh Farm, the only U.S. National Park that is a working farm, and then some shots around the village of Woodstock.

At noon it was time to say goodbye to my new friends, which always makes me sad. But it is great to know that I now have more people to visit when I make journeys around the globe.

05 Oct 2015

Day two of Vermont Fall Foliage Workshop

ChittendenWe did a ton of driving yesterday seeking the best color in the leaves. We found some good spots up north, but today I kept us closer to home so we could shoot more and drive less. We started the day at Chittenden Reservoir, which always looks good. There are usually several other photographers there but we had the place to ourselves this morning. For a good while there was no wind and people made some great reflection shots in the water.

foliageWorkshopper2015After grabbing breakfast at a nice, new little restaurant in Brandon, we were crossing the mountains and came upon a large hillside full of color. One little tree was in a field and it was bright red. The farm had a little store to sell maple syrup, so I knew there wouldn’t be a problem if we pulled off the road and made some shots. As I was getting out of the car, some people were coming out of the house so I let them know why two carloads of photographers were moving down the roadside. I told them about the international group that we have and they loved that we appreciated the beauty they enjoy daily and said we were welcome to wander the field and shoot whatever we like.

It is always great to run into people like that.

03 Oct 2014

Shooting to the top of Killington

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One of the many benefits of doing my photography workshops is that I get to snap some pictures along the way. I spend most the time working with the other photographers, but I occasionally get a few shots off. We rode the gondola to the top of Killington mountain today where the leaves were looking great. I shot this one out the window on the way up. Once we were there it looked pretty cool but there weren’t a lot of great photos to be had on top of the mountain. I was happy to get this one along the way.

03 Nov 2013

A fitting last day for an Oregon adventure

20131103-LEF_4627Today was the last of our short Oregon weekend photo adventure and we concentrated on waterfalls. Walter and I headed out from out hotel in Salem to Silver Falls State Park, home to several large waterfalls and plenty of hiking. The first falls was near the parking area and it is spectacular, it is one of the most photogenic falls in the state. Even though it was a short walk, Walter and I were shooting like fools before we even got to it. The trail leads behind the falls and to the other side and we worked our way around, shooting too much and trying not to get too wet from the blowing mist coming off the falls.

The next falls was about a mile away so we hiked the trail and made plenty of photos. The hike was pretty nice, of course water flows downhill and after shooting the second falls we had the choice of hiking farther for more falls or heading back toward the car. Time was getting late since we constantly stopped to shoot mushrooms, leaves and the green moss growing on trees, so we headed back for the car. The trail back was a little over a mile and, like usual, I was carrying a lot of camera equipment and the hike back was uphill. When I ran out of breath I’d find something to photograph so I didn’t look like the total out-of-shape old man I’ve become. Other hikers a bit younger than us were on the trail and struggling as much as me and they weren’t carrying extra gear, so I took solace in that.

We got back to the car and ventured back north to shoot waterfalls along the Columbia River gorge. Not long after getting in the car the rain started and stuck with us the rest of the day. The weather prognosticators got it right, they said 100% chance of rain and that is what Oregon got.

When shooting moving water I prefer cloudy days so I can keep my exposures long, the longer the better. The waterfalls in Oregon are huge and spectacular but very hard to shoot in a way that makes them look like anything more than a long, thin white ribbon. We stopped at several falls in the gorge and hiked down to Bridal Veil Falls, which surprising seemed like a long hike going down than coming back up. Walter and I were pretty tired at this point, we had driven a lot and fought the rain all day and when we got to the falls it pretty much looked like the other long, thin Oregon falls. The sky was very dark and as we were walking out I noticed a couple of bright yellow and red leaves at the edge of the water rushing away from the falls. The light was dim and everything was wet and the colors popped. Green moss on the rocks seemed to glow and with the water flowing past I knew it would make a great photo. My 13 second shutter speed made the water look milky everywhere and I came away with a photo that will be hanging big on my wall for a long time.

20131103-LEF_4399

10 Oct 2013

Birches and reflections make a good mix

pomfret_birch-2478I was up at my favorite pond in Pomfret, VT, this afternoon and enjoyed the way the foliage was reflecting on the water. There were two small birch trees on the near side of the pond in the shade and made an interesting shape. Since they were in the shade, they tended to look a bit blue when I opened them in Lightroom, my photo editing program. So when I made the trees look white it really enhanced the yellow of the reflections.

08 Oct 2013

Scouting for leaves in southern Vermont

barn_birch-2318I have my annual Vermont Fall Foliage Photography Workshop this weekend in Woodstock, VT. The workshop is sold out with people coming from CA, NE, KS, CO, NC, NJ and NH. We had wicked rain and wind yesterday which beat the leaves pretty bad, so I decided to head south today and see how the leaves look.

The foliage around Woodstock peaked last week but there is still good yellow and orange leaves hanging on. The deep reds didn’t appear this year, I think it was the lack of a killer frost, that is what usually makes the reds pop.

I found this nice scene on a back road south of Springfield. I like when I can get the white of a birch intermingled with colorful leaves.

15 Aug 2011

When it rains, time to head for the brook

 (Loren Fisher)

Rain pours on leaves and vines along Peter's Brook in Somerville, NJ. Click on the photo to buy a print.

When I was a kid and it started to rain, I’d run outside and wait for the water to roll down the street. We lived at the bottom of a small hill and in our little town there weren’t any curbs or storm drains. So when the rain began, I’d run out in the street and start moving dirt to make a dam to capture the water as it started flowing down the hill. When you’re a kid in a town of 300 people, you have to work hard to find entertainment. But it gave me an enjoyment for rain.

Today was about as rainy a day as they come. It rained hard all night, waking me up several times. After sitting around for a while, I decided to put on some old boots, grab my raincoat and umbrella and head out in the rain.

I put my macro on, stuck the camera under my raincoat and swung my tripod over my shoulder and walked over to a local park along Peter’s Brook. The rain was coming down pretty steady, so I sat under the umbrella by the broke, which was running fast after all the rain.

I tried some shots of leaves overlapping each other. The wind and long exposures made the images blurry so I moved father down the brook. I saw some fine yellow vine wrapping around some large leaves at the edge of the brook. A couple of the leaves were bright red.

I really liked the way the rain made the green, yellow and red colors shine.

As I was walking back home, I saw a large sycamore leaf laying in the grass. It looked like a leaf in October not what I usually see in August. It was fun to see all the color this time of year, so I wrestled with my umbrella to keep the camera dry and shot a bunch of close-up shots to show the detail of the color and the leaf’s veins.

By the time I got home, I was pretty much soaked. But I kept my camera under my rain coat and an extra lens in a plastic bag, so they were dry.

 (Loren Fisher)

A sycamore leaf changed color in August this year. Click on the photo to buy a print.

 

06 Nov 2010

Parks closed: gotta cull the deer herd

Frost covers a leaf at Scherman Hoffman Wildlife Sanctuary.

This morning I thought it would be good to go to Lord Stirling Park in Basking Ridge, NJ, which is adjacent to the Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge.  They are essentially the same place, they are only separated by the Passaic River and a different name. I got there while it was still fairly dark, taking advantage of the last day of daylight savings time. Now I have to get up an hour earlier to see the sun rise. I got out of the Jeep and saw a sign that said Trails Closed and then a rope across the main trail. Hanging off the rope was a little sign saying something about deer management. In other words hunters were in there culling the herd. So I thought I’d just go over to the NWR, I still had plenty of time before the sun came up. Of course, only hunters were allowed. I’m sure I could have found a trail in but a bored hunter might take a shot for fun.

Mist rises from a waterfalls at Lendells Pond in Mendham, NJ.

I understand the need to hold down the deer population. There are too many and when there is a tough winter, there won’t be enough food for them to sustain themselves. They are changing the landscape, you can see a browse line at their head height in any woods in the area. Many people complain about the deer eating their scrubs, I don’t care about that, but no new growth is happening because the deer eat tree saplings before they have a chance to grow. But I hate having the image in my head of a deer being shot by an arrow and then running in pain for however long it takes for the deer to bleed to death. I guess that is better than starving to death.

So I went over to the Audubon Society’s place, which is only a few miles away. They didn’t have any hunters but I was there before they opened the gate. So I drove around the property and came upon a water falls at the end of Ledells Pond in Mendham. It seems like I have been shooting lots of waterfalls lately but it looked good as the mist rose.

I went back over to the Audubon sanctuary and while I was driving around I saw three large bucks. I couldn’t tell if they were in the rut or scared by the hunters, but they looked nervous. Hopefully they didn’t stroll under a hunter’s tree stand.

02 Nov 2010

Getting down to the ground and looking close-up

Frost covers the edges of a leaf.

This morning was rather chilly, in the low 30’s when I hit the road before sunrise. I wandered back to Colonial Park in Franklin, NJ, and was happily greeted by a light frost on the ground. I enjoy getting down on the ground with my macro lens to shoot close-up shots of frosty things, especially colorful leaves.

Frost is melted off a leaf by the morning sun.

I had my tripod splayed out and I was on my knees hovering over the camera and concentrating rather hard on getting the angle I wanted as the rising sunlight swept across a leaf. I heard a little noise and I was rather startled to see a man standing nearby with his dog. I was in a part of the park that doesn’t get a lot of foot traffic, so this was the only person I had seen. As I looked up, the man was a little startled too. “I don’t see someone on the ground very often, I came over to make sure you were OK,” he said. I laughed and thanked him for his concern, I guess I did look like a blob of humanity on the ground. It was nice that he took the time to check on me.

The rising sun shines through the blades of a plant.

After my old knees didn’t want to be on the ground any longer, I noticed the sun shining through some long leaves along a fence in the formal garden. I liked the way the light interacted with the blades and created a highlight on the edges.